Three of the four light heavyweight titles will be on the line inside Madison Square Garden’s Hulu Theater on Saturday night.
Artur Beterbiev (-800) is a massive favorite at SI Sportsbook going into this bout against Joe Smith Jr. (+560). Beterbiev is one the most dangerous light heavyweights in recent memory, going 17-0 with a 100% win-to-knockout ratio.
Smith (28-3, 22 KOs), his opponent, has been very successful as of late, winning four straight since his last loss against WBA light heavyweight champion Dimtry Bivol.
With a possible unification fight with Bivol looming for the winner, the stakes are extremely high for both boxers. A Beterbiev loss would be an upset for the ages, while a Smith loss would drop him to a contender on the bad side of title considerations.
Date: Saturday Jun 18, 2022
Location: Hulu Theater at MSG | New York, NY
Main Card: 9 p.m. ET
Main Event ring walks (approx.): 11 p.m. ET
Jahyae Brown vs Keane McMahon – Super welterweight
Wendy Toussaint vs Asina Byfield – Super welterweight
Robeisy Ramirez vs. Abraham Nova – Featherweight
Artur Beterbiev (-800) vs. Joe Smith Jr. (+560) – WBC, IBF, and WBO light heavyweight titles
While always placing a bet on the underdog in a title fight can be enticing, the odds in this one are just way too much for Smith to overcome.
I expect Beterbiev to come out with a controlled pace and look to cut off the ring and keep Smith on the edges, peppering him with jabs and calculating Smith’s timing.
As the fight enters the mid-to-later rounds Beterbiev will have just done too much to break down Smith in the early rounds and I expect him to find an opportunity to get a stoppage somewhere in the 8-10 rounds.
BET: Beterbiev to win in rounds 7-12 (-105)
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